We had a nice intimate group and a good dose of the weird and wonderful at September’s Clay Day…
Carol showed us the intricacies of the Sutton Slice technique (push tiny bits of clay in at a time - don’t try to roll in a whole sheet), don’t use a release agent like water or cornflour on the texture (you want the clay to stick to the mould a bit) and only roll your backing sheet over once (after wetting both the back of the clay and the roller so that they don’t stick), otherwise you’ll damage your beautiful crisp shapes and lines underneath.
It was a credit to Carol that virtually everyone felt the need to go off and try the technique for themselves straight after the demo. Personally I’ve never managed to make the Sutton Slice work, so I was totally thrilled to find out what I was doing wrong, as the end result can be astonishingly beautiful. Charul spent a long time on an intricate Sutton Slice pendant to match a sari, with great results (although the finished & cured end result got mislaid somewhere in packing up at the end of the day – please let us or Charul know if you find it!).
Ann Parker then did a very hands-on demonstration of the huge variety of mould-making materials available to create your own textures. They included silicone bathroom sealant (not good and very sticky), a strange Japanese compound called Oyumaru (excellent – probably the best), and hard plastic beads which your pour into hot water and then mangle to create a soft malleable mass (the CoolMorph is better than the Polymorph). Ann also demonstrated the more traditional mould makers like the two part silicone putty which – although excellent – works out quite expensive.
Several people had thoughtfully brought along interestingly textured items including shoes (plimsolls have great treads!), pieces of coral, and ammonites to impress into the mould material. Some of the items even survived the experience! Lots of squishing and pressing was done by the audience, and we all got sticky and hands-on playing with the silicone.
AGM, Show and Tell etc
We arranged the tables as one long column, and the effect was much more sociable, though less accommodating of larger groups. The show and tell table had some beautiful items including – to much amazement and many oohs and aahs – a stunning clutch bag by Kathleen Dustin. Thanks so much to Annabella Taurino for bringing it along to show us – it was a real treat to be able to examine something most of us have only seen in books.
It was a great day with a lot of laughter and a nice spirit. We even managed to fit an AGM, an annual report and a finance update into a five minute section just before lunch…! The steering group continues to look for new ideas for demos so please let us know if there’s something you’re burning to either A) demo, or B) find out more about or have demonstrated.
In the meantime, subscribe to our new website in order to continue to receive Clay Day updates and advance notice – you need to go to the bottom of any of the pages at www.lpcg.co.uk and add your name and email address so that we can send you information via email. The old website died, so please don’t assume you’ll still get updates just because you used to… you need to add yourself to our new list. This is particularly important for those of us who don’t use Facebook!
Looking forward to seeing everyone in November for our last Clay Day of the year.
The dates for your diary for NEXT year (2017) are:
29 Jan 2017